Homeless people experience poorer levels of general physical and mental health than the general population, and there is a substantial international evidence base which documents multiple morbidities. Research largely finds the average age of death of a homeless person in England as 47.

Chronic homelessness is also an associated marker for tri-morbidity, complex health needs and premature death. Tri-morbidity is the combination of physical ill-health with mental ill-health and drug or alcohol misuse. Many homeless people die from treatable medical conditions, HIV, liver and other gastro-intestinal disease, respiratory disease, and consequences of drug and alcohol dependence.

"Recent research at a specialist clinic for asylum seekers and refugees found that 91 out of 112 patients (81%) were homeless and presented with a range of complex needs"

Causes and consequences of homelessness 

The causes for homelessness are complex and multi-factorial, including significant emotional and /or physical trauma in childhood, poor familial relationships, unemployment, lack of qualifications, substance misuse, mental health illness, debt and poverty, or institutionalisation.

Research by Professor Barry McCormick, has shown that homeless people attend A&E six times as often as the housed population, are admitted four times as often and stay three times as long. A homeless drug user admitted to hospital is seven times more likely to die over the next five years than a housed drug user admitted with the same medical problem.


Read the whole report at https://www.jsna.info/sites/default/files/Rough%20Sleepers%20Health%20and%20Healthcare%20Annex.pdf